Tuesday, June 27, 2006

The Jordan Times | Muslims in Britain

In today's issue of The Jordan Times an intersting article by Lord Treisman was published... the article titled " Muslims in Britian -'key part of our moderen, multicultural society'"...
[[The truth is that Muslims have been an integral part of Britain and of our way of life, at home and abroad, for centuries. ]]

[[Over the last two centuries, Muslims have settled in the UK in increasing numbers, to the point where there are an estimated two million Muslims in the UK today. The first purpose-built mosque opened in Woking in 1889 and in 1940 the government donated £100,000 towards the building of the first mosque in London — now the Regents Park Mosque — in recognition of the bravery and courage of Muslim soldiers who fought and died for Britain in World War I. Today there are over 1,200 mosques across the UK and Islam is by far the second biggest religion in the UK.]]

[[The world is becoming a smaller place and peoples of different cultures and religions are having to learn to live together as never before. Of course this will result in tension from time to time, but this also presents tremendous opportunities. We have a lot to learn from each other and this exchange of new ideas creates the dynamism which pushes us forward intellectually, scientifically and culturally.]]

read the whole

Monday, June 26, 2006

[upon design] feel like running?!

This is one of the best commercials I ever seen… whenever I watch it... I want to run!!! and keep on running!

[[A high-tech RBK running shoe becomes the seed for an entire urban landscape, which sprouts like an out-of-control vine. Motion Theory’s directors and designers combined forces in order to create the burgeoning city, which seamlessly integrates L.A. locations and a full CG city. As the city takes shape, the runner faces an escalating series of challenges, including rising construction barriers, shifting walls, falling objects, and buildings that close in on him. A primal, percussion-driven track sets a vigorous pace along the way, leading to a finale in which the runner effortlessly springs over the final obstacle and sends the city retreating back into the shoe.]]

:: watch the commercial

courtsey of Motion Theory

Saturday, June 24, 2006

carpe diem

I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately
I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life
To put to rout all that was not life,
And not, when I had come to die,
Discover that I had not lived.

David Thoreau.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Nostalgia | maktabet el-funoon

Every architecture student in Jordan must’ve passed at least once by “maktabet el-funoon” – Arts stationary/book shop!
For five faithful years I used to go there! And always coming out loaded with cardboards, balsa, UHU tubes, foam, coloring pencils, papers and the ultimate archi students’ power --- brown corrugated cardboards “contour =)”.
Space wise, Maktabet el-funoon is very small and tight… yet somehow it always got the whole dof3a “class” in! Or so it would seem! We would be buying stuff, discussing concepts, wondering what best material to use, inventing stuff, complaining about the lack of time as the deadlines are getting closer, and as always chatting with either Adel or Imad….
Maktabet el-funoon for me isn’t just a shop! But an event that was repeated harmonically in the plot of my archi years!
Yesterday I went to the ECA shop! Which turned out to be Edinburgh’s version of maktabet el-funoon… when I was there I totally lost track of place and time… I sank in my own nostalgia as I was delicately checking the modeling materials, the pens and pencils… and the old good UHU! I couldn’t stop… at each turn I took I thought that a familiar archi face would pop out from behind and ask me what I’m looking for!
Amazingly enough I found ECA’s version of the maktabet el-funoon sketching books! [one of my favorite stuff ever] Of course I couldn’t resist the temptation!
And as I walked out of the college shop holding the foam board and struggling against the [gentle] wind of Scotland my heart was [just] pleased!

me sinking in my own fifth year spot! uh those were the days

last minute rush... my lovely dof3a!

sketch books... right> maktabet elfunoon... left> ECA shop

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

21st June | the looooongest day!

So today is the longest day of the year in our part of the world! And in Scotland it is really long!!
Imagine Fajir (sunrise prayer) at 1:30 am and Isha’a(evening prayer) at 11:15 pm! I wonder if there is someone who can fast today? =)
Enjoy the day!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Da Vinci Code!

Yesterday I went to see “The Da Vinci Code” film and today I went for another film called Saint Mary an Iranian production about the story of Virgin Mary since she was born till she had birth of Jesus peace be upon them.
We know that the Da Vinci Code has caused a large fuss! I read the novel couple of years ago, just as it was getting famous! And I remember that at one stage I felt the novel too informative for me… I really felt lost and I had to go and search online for the art/architecture works mentioned. I felt fascinated by all that! But afterwards I managed to create a balance and realized that a lot of what is mentioned in the book is actually all in the author’s head.
And in the movie they draw our attention to the fact that the book and the film is actually what the author is presuming and not the truth. In a line where Sir Teabing says “the mind sees what it wants to see” or something like that, as he was explaining his theory about the Last Supper and the new concept of the holy grail.
So all the analysis that the author did when dealing with Da Vinci’s paintings and the history events that happened with the Knight templars and so on are one way of looking at things and creating a sort of interweaving web between them. Is it the truth? It’s hard to say yes or no! I’d like to think that there [might] be some sort of truth in it.
Again, in the novel you’ll realize the fact that Jesus is a prophet, a man with extraordinary features and not the son of God! And it claims that the church did change these facts and made a god out of him. To a certain extent this is what most Muslims believe! We do believe that Jesus is a prophet of God and that people who came after him made a god out of him and of his mother. But Jesus on the Day of Judgment would say that he had nothing to do with that!
[[And (remember) when Allah will say (on the Day of Resurrection): “O Issa (Jesus) son of Mariam (Mary)! Did you say unto men: ‘Worship me and my mother as two gods besides Allah?’ “He will say: “Glorified are You! It was not for me to say what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, You would have surely known it. You know what is in my inner self though I do not know what is in Yours; truly, You, only You, are the All-Knower of all that is hidden (and unseen).]] Holy Quran 5:116
And as far as the idea of having a holy bloodline and that Jesus got married and had a descendant… I don’t know much about that from an Islamic point of view, but from what I heard we think that Jesus did not got married.
In the movie near the ending Robert Langdon mentioned his own faith in Jesus as he was once trapped in a well and he prayed for Jesus to save his life and that’s what happened! I can’t remember reading this in the novel. But in any case this is an attempt to show people that this novel and the movie is not anti-Christ as a lot of angry people all over the world claimed.
I do understand the anger and the endless attempts to ban the movie and before that the novel! But is it indeed the right call to make? And should we as Muslims rush into the main stream of opposing the movie/novel without understanding what it is all about?!
We do respect other people’s choices of belief! And we accept the fact that we are different! But at the same time we only believe in what God has told us! And that is what we think is the truth!
It seems that the talk and debates after the Da Vinci Code is gonna continue for a while! Which reminds me about an evening that will take place on the 30th/June titled “Beyond the Da Vinci Code – Muslim and Christian responses to the Jesus controversy”. This will be the launching event of Islam Festival Edinburgh| August 2006!
Well… make sure to pass by if you happen to be around and check this for more details about the evening.
And as it happens to be I read this good article by a Muslim scholar [who’s a former priest] and his opinion about all the fuss around the Da Vinci Code.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

[kalam] objects | movements | beings

Currently am exploring a new medium… I’m studying more about sound… and as I was reading a basic article about sound! A very basic fact struck me! What is sound actually?
Sound is the vibration of the particles of air [or other mediums].
But what is vibration? It is a movement! So sound is actually a movement not a physical object or entity but a movement! Yet we deal with sound as a [thing] or what I’ll call a being!
Going back to earlier reflections I had about wind!
Again wind is nothing else but air movement! Yet we deal with wind as a thing! Or a being!
So if we to define or decide what is a being and what is not! We’ll have to go beyond what we were taught that a matter is some[thing] that takes a physical space, have a mass and can change from one state to another!
For instance air is a matter because it takes a physical space and can actually be changed into liquid or further more into a solid object! But if air starts to move we have a new being coming from it! Whether wind or sound! Both of which are basic components of our daily lives!
From this we can go beyond and think how useful wind and sound are. Or how many inventions, technologies and human civilization progress were/are based on the concept of [being]ize movement.
Now if we to look at a larger scale movement let us say pedestrian movements in a public space or people’s circulation in a building not as movement of beings but as a being in itself! How would this change the way we perceive space inhabitation as well as we conceive space!

Monday, June 12, 2006

Sunday, June 11, 2006

don't cry Huda...

Sometimes… words turn into aches in our mouths… and we know that now it is time to be silent… and only pray…
To God we belong and to Him we return…
more about the story:

Sunday, June 04, 2006

A poem | The Waking

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I have to go.

We think by feeling. What is there to know?
I hear my being dance from ear to ear.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Of those so close behind me, which are you?
God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,
And learn by going where I have to go.

Light takes the Tree; but who can tell us how?
The lonely worm climbs up a winding stair;
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Great Nature has another thing to do
To you and me; so take the lively air;
And, lovely, learn by going where to go.

This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.
What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.

Theodore Roethke

thanks Mona for sharing this with me...